Whether you're looking for a new home or are getting ready to sell your present home, today's fast-changing real estate market offers many choices for working with a real estate company to accomplish your goals. That's why it's important to understand how agency - the relationship between you, RE/MAX Mountain Realty and your agent - really works.
Beginning July 1, 1995, the North Carolina Real Estate Commission has mandated that a real estate agent must disclose to you in writing who the agent works for in the real estate transaction. ALL N.C. REAL ESTATE LICENSEES must comply.
Agency is a long-established legal obligation upon which all agent and client relationships are based. Legally an agent is a person who acts on behalf of another person- their client. If the agent is acting as an exclusive seller's agent, the client is the seller. If the agent is acting as an exclusive buyer's agent, the client is the buyer. Agency creates "fiduciary duties" between these parties. Those duties are as follows:
Loyalty - to act in your best interests to the exclusion of all other interest.
Obedience - to obey promptly and efficiently all lawful instruction of the client.
Reasonable Care & Diligence - to work with you in pursuing any questions you have regarding your purchase or sale and to disclose all material facts about the home.
Accounting - to account for all monies or paperwork promptly in the transaction.
Disclosure - to keep the client fully informed at all times of all facts the broker obtains that affect the transaction.
Exclusive Seller Agency
When you list your home for sale, you employ the real estate company as your "seller's representative" to act exclusively on your behalf and in your best interests. You will sign a listing agreement which will outline the duties of your agent and their company, how long the contract will be in effect, under what conditions a commission will be earned, to whom, those fees will be paid-to a seller's agent, buyer's agent, or both. When you list your home for sale, RE/MAX Mountain Realty and all of their agents will represent you and your interests.
Exclusive Buyer Agency
When you want to purchase a home you may want an exclusive buyer agency- your agent and their company represents you exclusively instead of the seller. The buyer agreement states the obligation of the buyer and the buyer's
agent, the duration of the contract, under what conditions a fee will be paid, and by whom.
Dual or Limited Agency
An agent can only serve as dual agent with informed consent. The possibility of this dual agency must be agreed to prior to the seller listing their home for sale and before the buyer signs a buyer agency contract. This enables the company to show and sell their "in house" listings. When the buyer wants to purchase that "in house" listing, dual agency must be consented to again in writing prior to writing the contract. The seller must consent again as well prior to reviewing and negotiating the received offer.
The reason for the consent is because the agent and their company that was an exclusive representative of the seller and an exclusive representative of the buyer, now is acting as a representative of both. A dual agent has a limited range of fiduciary duties to the buyer and the seller. A dual agent is limited on the duty of loyalty and in the disclosure of confidential information. The dual agent provides the services necessary to complete the "in house" sale and treat all parties to the transaction honestly. When dual agency occurs, the real estate company and other agents shall:
- Disclose to the buyer all material facts about the physical condition of the property.
- Assist in property inspections required by the buyer
- Be bound to the original fiduciary duties in the agency agreement with the exception of undivided loyalty and full disclosure.
- Diligently facilitate the sale of the property after the purchase agreement or sales contract has been accepted.
When dual agency occur, RE/MAX Mountain Realty and their agents shall not disclose:
- The motivation of the seller to sell or the buyer to buy
- Price and terms either party may offer or accept other than those in the listing contract or purchase agreement
- The negotiating strategy of either party or any confidential information that would jeopardize the position of either party- unless express written permission has been given by the buyer/seller.